WINTER HAVEN, Fla. – The Felician University softball team suffered a pair of non-conference, out-of-region losses during PFX Athletics' THE Spring Games on Sunday at the DiamondPlex Softball Complex. Felician was edged, 6-5, in eight innings by West Virginia Wesleyan College in its morning game before going down to a 14-1, five-inning defeat to the University of Findlay on Sunday afternoon.
Senior first baseman Nicole Spiegelberg (Blauvelt, N.Y.) was the only Golden Falcon to pick up a hit in each game.
Felician (1-5) was designated as the home team against West Virginia Wesleyan and got out to a 3-0 lead after two innings. Sophomore Jackie Ribaudo (Staten Island, N.Y.) drove in a run with a first inning ground ball, and freshman Alexis De La Cruz (San Jacinto, Calif.) plated two more with a single in the second.
The Bobcats cut into the deficit in the fourth on a two-run double by sophomore Destiny Alvarado (Winthrop Harbor, Ill.). But Speigelberg answered with a home run leading off the bottom of the fifth, and the game progressed into the late innings with the Golden Falcons ahead, 4-2.
Felican senior pitcher Erin Powers (Aberdeen, N.J.) (1-1) issued consecutive walks to start the sixth. Alvarado, who drew the first one, tagged and advanced on fly ball, and then came home on a pinch-hit sacrifice fly by junior teammate Kelley Bourne (Chandler, Ariz.). After a single and a passed ball, Powers escaped the frame by inducing another flyout.
The Golden Falcons were retired in order in the home half of the sixth. Powers found immediate trouble again in the seventh, yielding singles to the first two batters. A pair of flyouts left her one out from victory, but sophomore designated player Kiley Turner (Leesburg, Va.) came through with a tying RBI single.
Bobcat starting pitcher Ciana Bowen (Louisa, Ky.) (3-1) again set Felician down perfectly in the seventh, and the international tiebreaker was enacted for the eighth. A single and stolen base left Bobcat runners on second and third. Brooke Clark (Daniels, W. Va.) singled home the go-ahead run, but De La Cruz nailed the second runner at home plate from left field. Clark advanced to second on the play, however, and scored on an Alli Robinson (Buckhannon, W. Va.) double.
With the two-run lead, WVWC (6-1) allowed Felician's placed runner, C.J. Apacible (Long Beach, Calif.) to score on a pair of groundouts. Bobcat reliever Hannah Hudson (Blackstone, Va.) notched a strikeout to complete the save. Clarke finished 3 for 5 for WVWC, which outhit the Golden Falcons, 12-7. Senior right fielder Isabel Davis (Chula Vista, Calif.) was 2 for 3 for Felician.
Felician's afternoon contest got away from it early. De La Cruz, who had walked with one out, scored an unearned run in the top of the first inning, but Findlay (6-4) answered with an 8-spot in the bottom half. The Oilers rapped out six hits, highlighted by senior Rebecca Harvey's (Wayne, Ohio) grand slam home run.
Findlay tallied a single run in the second, then tacked on five in the fourth. The Golden Falcons, meanwhile were limited to two hits by Oiler junior righty Megan Fisher (Wapakoneta, Ohio) (3-2). She struck out seven and walked two over five innings, throwing 53 of 76 pitches for strikes.
Spiegelberg and leadoff batter Vienna Chierchia (Manalapan, N.J.) garnered the Felician safeties.
Felician is idle on Monday. The Golden Falcons continue play in THE Spring Games on Tuesday in Winter Haven, facing Wheeling University at 9:15 a.m. and East region foe College of Saint Rose at 11:30 a.m.